CPS Director Laura Coulthard (at center)
Sacramento County will bring in an outside expert to evaluate its Child Protective Services policies, procedures and structure. The move comes in response to criticism over the deaths of seven children in the last year.
(Sound of phone ringing)
CPS Employee: “You’ve reached CPS; how may I help you?”
The county averages 4,000 of these calls every month, and officials say they handle them all – despite getting $30 million less from the state than they should. Still, says CPS director Laura Coulthard:
Coulthard: “Any time there is a child death it is totally unacceptable.”
So facing criticism for seven of those deaths since last September, Coulthard and the county brass say they’ll hire an independent consultant within the next two weeks.
Coulthard: “We welcome another set of eyes to come in and take a look at how we’re doing business and let us know if they have recommendations or ideas or changes.”
Tuesday’s announcement comes two weeks after a four-year-old boy was found beaten to death – and his mother’s live-in boyfriend was charged. CPS had opened a case on the boy just five weeks earlier.